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Deron Williams: “I would never force Coach Sloan out”

Feb 10, 2011, 11:39 PM EDT

Utah Jazz v Houston Rockets, Game 7 Getty Images

You’ve seen the reports — the relationship between Deron Williams and Jerry Sloan led to the post-game meeting with the team owner and GM Wednesday night, a meeting that by Thursday morning had Sloan stepping down after 23 seasons as the Jazz coach.

Williams said it was not like that in an interview with 1320 KFAN radio in Salt Lake City. He said he never went to management and said that one of them had to go, he or Sloan.

“I would never force Coach Sloan out of Utah. He’s meant more to this town, this organization than I have by far. Not my place. If that was the case I would just say I wanted out.”

I believe him on this, that he never went to the organization directly. That, of course, is something else entirely from the leaders of the organization seeing the clashes Williams and Sloan did have and that leading to fear about losing Williams to free agency in the summer of 2012. That can lead to the organization putting pressure on Sloan independent of Williams asking, leading to Sloan deciding he didn’t want to fight another battle and walking away.

Williams acknowledged the two had their fights. He added people not in the locker room or around the team have overhyped the disagreement between he and Sloan from Wednesday. Both men wanted to win, both were stubborn and that led to some clashes.

“We just had a disagreement. We’ve had worse, I’ve seen him have worse with other players.  Jerry is very fiery, I guess that is the word, and I am, too. So we just clash on things.”

He said their relationship has always been that way.

“I wouldn’t say we’ve had a rocky relationship, but we’ve had our disagreements over the years. Probably no more than any other coach or player have arguments. We’re both competitive we’re both very stubborn and I think that’s where we clash.”

He added that this season has been like pretty much every other in terms of their disagreements.

He added that his relationship is good with incoming coach Ty Corbin and that the players like him.

We’ll see what all this means  on the court starting Friday night against Phoenix.

  1. stuckonwords - Feb 11, 2011 at 2:17 AM

    Everybody sure is quick to insist that Jerry wasn’t forced out, and maybe he wasn’t, exactly. But why is nobody taking greater notice of the fact that Asst. Coach Phil Jackson, an 18 year employee, also resigned. This obviously isn’t just that Jerry “woke up this morning and decided it was time”. They didn’t both wake up thinking that. So something happened to cause this, and I’m really hopeful that the truth doesn’t just get swept under the rug (likely to protect to protect somebody’s image).

  2. savocabol1 - Feb 11, 2011 at 8:25 AM

    Have fun while it still lasts Jazz fans. Seems to me your organization is taking a page out of my Cavs’ book.

  3. metalhead65 - Feb 11, 2011 at 9:55 AM

    for all you morons out there saying sloan and his record were overrated,think teams like the clippers,wizards,timberwolves and nets would not mind having that record of consistancy over the last few years? williams is just another spoiled and pampered player who did not get that treatment from sloan and was upset about it. think dumping sloan will chaqnge his mind about going someplace else?just hope he does a better job of it than lebron and the way carmello is dragging his departure out of denver. please when that time comes don’t offer excuses just come out and say I don’t like utah and want to play someplace else. in other words just tell the truth.

  4. craigw24 - Feb 11, 2011 at 10:24 AM

    Asst. Coach Phil Jackson is a package with Coach Sloan. When Jerry left, Phil was also leaving. Please don’t make anything more of it than that.

    • stuckonwords - Feb 11, 2011 at 1:02 PM

      Phil and Jerry are married? My guess is they’re entirely free to make their own decisions. If Phil decided that what ailed Jerry also ailed him, then he’d leave. But to say that if Jerry left, Phil had no choice but to leave also…well that’s just insulting to Phil. Also, to suggest that nobody should even consider that there was more to the story is just a good way to pretend that the whole world plays fair and the way we want it to. It’s entirely justified to ask the question.

  5. zblott - Feb 11, 2011 at 2:19 PM

    Deron Williams will be gone soon enough.

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